Categorized | News, Weather

Iselle: Updates for Sunday (Aug. 10)

UPDATED (12:15 PM on 8/10/2014)

If you need clean drinking water you can take a container to one of the Hawaii County water spigots to fill-up, no need to wait in a distribution line if what you need is water. If you need to get rid of trash you can visit a Hawaii County Transfer Station (dump). Links to these facilities are also in the righ-hand sidebar of Hawaii 24/7.

Hawaii County Water Spigots.

Hawaii County Water Spigots.

UPDATED (11:43 AM on 8/10/2014)

HELCO UPDATE: Power restoration update for Hawai‘i Island

HILO, August 10, 2014 (11:00 a.m.) – Hawai‘i Electric Light crews continue to work on restoring power as quickly as possible to customers who lost electricity as a result of Tropical Storm Iselle. About 8,100 customers (approximately 10 percent of total Hawai‘i Island customers) remained without power, mostly in the Puna District but also in smaller pockets on the east side of the island. Power was restored to a portion of Hawaiian Paradise Park late Saturday afternoon.

Crews have made significant progress repairing the main transmission lines that serve as the backbone of the island’s electric grid, making the overall system more stable. Now crews can focus their attention on restoring power to individual neighborhoods.

Customers who have not yet reported their outage should call 969-6666 to report it.

Customers who are still without power at this time should expect an extended outage into next week and, in some cases, much longer.

Hawai‘i Electric Light will continue to prioritize work that will bring service back to the largest number of customers while keeping the grid stable. This systematic approach will help ensure that power will stay on once restored. For example, on Saturday, crews restored power to major roads in Hawaiian Paradise Park. This work brought the power back on for customers on Kaloli, Beach Road, and parts of Paradise Drive. By fixing the lines that bring power into the neighborhood, crews can now focus on individual streets in Hawaiian Paradise Park.

Hawaii Electric Light urges customers to remember downed power lines should be considered dangerous. Do not approach a downed line or attempt to move it. If you see someone injured by a downed line, call 9-1-1 for assistance.

Customers are asked to check that stoves and other appliances are turned off or unplugged to avoid safety hazards or damage to their appliances as power is restored.

Hawaiian Electric and Maui Electric are sending crews, vehicles and other equipment to assist with the restoration. In addition, contracted construction and tree-trimming companies are also participating. Collectively, this will nearly triple the number of crews in the field conducting damage assessment and working to restore power to customers.
All workers participating with the restoration process will be wearing badges identifying them as employees of Hawaii Electric Light, Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric, or an approved utility contractor. Customers should feel free to ask for proper identification if approached by someone who says they are from Hawaii Electric Light or any other organization. Utility company vehicles are clearly marked. Approved contractors have signs for their vehicles indicating they are working on behalf of the company.

Hawai‘i Electric Light’s business offices will reopen for normal business on Monday. Some services, such as new service requests, may be delayed as work crews focus on the restoration effort.

Statement from Jay Ignacio, president of Hawai‘i Electric Light:

We understand the frustration of our customers who are still without power and sincerely apologize to them. We understand that customers want estimated restoration times so they can plan. Unfortunately, the extent of damage is worse than anything we’ve ever seen here. We’re working on providing more specific, reliable estimates and hope to do so by tomorrow (Monday) morning. Customers without power should expect to remain without it well into next week, if not longer. Again, we apologize and ask for their continued patience.

“Our first priority was to repair our high–voltage transmission lines. With the backbone of the island’s electric system restored, and our grid more stable, crews can start working on restoring neighborhood circuits for customers who are still without power.”

When Iselle hit Hawai‘i Island, the wind and rain caused trees to topple and fly into power lines, breaking lines and poles. We were in a very precarious situation at the end of last week. As Iselle hit our island, we started losing our transmission lines – the backbone of our electric grid – and came very close to losing the whole island. Of the 35 transmission lines on the island, we lost more than half during the storm. Both the north and south transmission lines were lost as well as the transmission lines serving Puna Geothermal Venture.

As soon as Iselle passed, crews began working to repair the high voltage transmission lines. Some of these lines could be restored through automatic switching.

But others, like the line that runs from Papaikou to Kalopa Mauka/Makai, have to be partially rebuilt. Some of the broken poles were on very high embankments. Crews worked around the clock to rebuild this section of the line, only to have another tree fall onto lines in another area.

The transmission line serving Puna Geothermal Venture goes through a forested area near Nanawale Estates, and our crews cannot reach this line because of the many fallen trees. That area has at least 19 broken poles and will take a very long time to rebuild, starting with bulldozers to clear a path for trucks and crews.

We thank our customers for their efforts to reduce energy use on Friday so we could meet the energy demands of the whole island.”

(Video courtesy of Big Island Video News)

Hawaii 24/7 Staff


This is a Community Assistance information update for Sunday August 10th at 9:00 A.M.

Distribution of water and ice will resume at the new Pahoa High School Gym at 10 AM this morning.

An additional distribution point for water and ice has been established at the Mountain View Gym.

The Mountain View Gym Distribution point will open at 11:00 AM.

Due to lack of electrical power, the Department of Water Supply is hauling water to Paauilo, Kalapana, and upper Olaa-Mountain View. Consumers are requested to continue restricted water use.

Call 961-8379 for any emergency water concerns.


This is a Community Assessment and Assistance information update for Sunday, August 10th at 6:00 am.

Post storm impact operations are continuing today. The community’s patience and understanding is greatly appreciated.

Hurricane Julio continues to pass north of Hawaii Island and is located approximately 330 miles north northeast of Hilo. Presently the only forecasted hazard for Hawaii Island is high surf along the east facing shores. Surf heights of 10-15 feet are expected and a High Surf Warning remains in effect through 6:00 am tomorrow Monday, August 11th.

In addition to the primary goals of restoring power to all areas and the clearing of all roads, the following actions and operations will be ongoing:

The Department of Public Works and Hawaii National Guard will be continuing with debris clearance and road clearing operations to reestablish access and egress into the affected areas. The community is thanked for their help and assistance with the clearing of the roads and the removal of trees and debris. Everyone is reminded that all downed powerlines should be treated as energized and avoided to insure safety.

HELCO crews will continue to work on restoring power in the affected areas and again we thank the community for your patience and understanding with this effort. Please do not interfere with the operations of the HELCO crews.

Residents are advised to not eat any refrigerated foods that have not been kept cool.

A community assistance Point of Distribution or POD will be set up at the Pahoa High School Gym effective 10:00 am this morning to provide area residents affected by the hurricane with water, ice, and tarps. This will be an ongoing operation and we ask everyone for your patience and understanding. Please listen to the local radio stations for further updates and instructions.

Residents who sustained damage to their homes and who would like to proceed with repairs are advised to make contact with their insurance provider and to photograph and document all damage and repairs to aid with possible recovery and in the event government assistance programs are made available.

Please monitor your local radio stations for continued updates and information.

From Ka‘u Calendar:

WOOD VALLEY ROADS and stream crossings were being quickly repaired Friday and Saturday by county road crews with large machines and tools for cutting and moving aside fallen trees and other debris.

Wood Valley residents who were cleaning up farms and homesites Saturday praised the county and said they hope that restoration of electrical power will also come quickly.

A major deterrent is a snarl of fallen eucalyptus and utility poles and wires at the junction of Wood Valley and Kapapala Ranch road.

Government road crews must wait for Hawaii Electric Light Co. to make a plan and work on extracting the electric lines from the mess. The company says it is bringing in workers from off-island to help with restoring numerous power outages in Iselle’s hardest hit areas.

All power was restored Friday night in Pahala and by Saturday morning in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and in Volcano Village. Power was out in the Discovery Harbour area just for several hours during the storm.

There was no disruption in county water delivery in Ka‘u. However, Wood Valley remained without water today. The community takes care of its own water system, and volunteers were working on broken lines and retrieving parts to restore the system.

In agriculture, coffee farmers and macadamia growers lost some trees.

Whitney Coffman, of Wood Valley, said about 200 coffee trees and 100 macadamia trees went down on his farms.

Other coffee and mac nut trees could be seen on their sides driving up Wood Valley Road.

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